Teaching the ‘Stars of Tomorrow’ at Western University

It was my absolute pleasure to have worked with the Canadian Operatic Arts Association (COAA) at Western University these past few weeks. http://www.music.uwo.ca/outreach/images-pdf/coaa_aedoBrochure14-15.pdf  The faculty is topnotch and the students worked very hard absorbing a great deal of information in a very short time, just over three weeks. The program culminated in two performances which were highly successful, in particular the second performance as the students had already achieved success with the first performance thereby lessening the ‘fear factor’ at the second performance allowing them to dig deep and bring their “A-game”. It is often that level of confidence that can make the difference between success and failure. Performers often talk themselves out of success due to their fear of failure and self-criticism. This program at COAA, while challenging, instils a supportive and encouraging approach which stimulates confidence. I was astounded to personally witness the improvement for many of these singers and pianists during this three-week program. I wish them all the very best for the future. Robert De Niro recently advised students during a graduation speech which he closed with the word “NEXT” meaning don’t let rejection stop you but rather move on to the next opportunity. This is truly wise advice. “Rejection: it isn’t personal. Next.” – Robert De Niro    http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/robert-de-niro-harsh-advice-nyu-art-school-grads-article-1.2232322

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